About the blog

FOREWORD (DATED FEBRUARY 5, 2018)

Sometime in 2013, a friend and I were hanging out after our acting workshop under filmmaker Rahyan Carlos. Suddenly, my friend asked me, “Julian, if may lumabas na negative writeup tungkol sa ‘yo, handa ka ba?”

I said yes, but on September 8 of that year, I found out how unprepared I was for something like that. That was the day my reputation died.

A negative writeup about me was published in a certain tabloid, and it caught me off guard in a big way. I spent the next few months reeling from the writeup and trying valiantly to clean up the mess it made of my personal and professional lives.

In 2014, just when I had started to feel better, another writeup appeared in a different tabloid. I was crushed. Up until those writeups were published, I felt invincible. But those writeups destroyed my self-image. I started seeing myself through the eyes of the people who wrote them. 

I ended up questioning everything I thought I knew about myself and the industry I loved dearly. In my mind, I was no longer a good friend who wanted the best for everyone in his inner circle. Everywhere I went, I felt like I had the word “stalker” stamped on my forehead. My friends and mother rallied around me, but even all their love and support couldn’t keep me from spiraling out of control. I acted out and started cutting myself to cope with the pain I was feeling. I felt like I had no redeeming value and that I was a waste of space who deserved to die.

On May 17, 2015, I attempted suicide by jumping off a thirteen-storey building. Luckily I was rescued by some good Samaritans, my Filipino-British best friend Tim Macardle and my mother Tinna Bonifacio. They helped me begin treatment with the psychiatrist of ABS-CBN’s Pinoy Big Brother. After conducting an evaluation, Dr. Randy Dellosa diagnosed me with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), anxiety, depression, and Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder (OCPD).

It’s been almost three years since then, and thanks to medication and talk therapy, I feel so much better. I still struggle with my mental illnesses on a daily basis but I’m able to manage my symptoms more effectively now.

When those writeups came, I was angry, hurt, and scared. I lost practically everything and I didn’t know what to do. But eventually I realized that there’s beauty and opportunity in loss. Instead of seeing it as an ending, see it as a new beginning. A chance to rebuild your life according to how you really want it to be. Sometimes, the only way to start over is to burn everything you had to the ground and rise from the ashes of what was.

Those writeups were the reason for my nervous breakdown in 2015. But now I’m grateful for them. If not for those writeups and everyone behind them, I wouldn’t have been able to embark on the journey of healing and self-discovery that’s helping me live my best life these days.

Right now, I feel more alive than I’ve ever been. Like a phoenix, I flamed out but I was reborn. I have a cool new job and my mother and I are on track to rebuilding our lives after everything that’s happened to us in the last three years. I can honestly say that I’m doing better than I ever was. That's why I revamped this blog. I want to take it more seriously from here on out. I feel more ready to take on the challenge of blogging now than I was when I first started this blog in 2015.

It took the death of my reputation for me to feel alive again—and I wouldn’t have it any other way. 



WHY JULES EXPLAINS IT ALL?

I named my blog Jules Explains it All in honor of the Nickelodeon show Clarissa Explains it All, which was one of my favorites back in the day. Before she was Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Melissa Joan Hart played Clarissa Darling, the main character, from 1991 to 1994. I didn’t get to watch the show until cable TV finally arrived on Philippine shores in the late 1990s, but when I did, it was love at first sight. Watch this and hopefully you'll see why I loved it so much:


I admired Clarissa because she was fun, funky and free-spirited. OK, so she could also be a little bit of a drama queen, but nobody took that against her because she was also charismatic and smart. As the show progressed, she pursued journalism and even became the editor-in-chief (EIC) of her school paper. Basically, I admired her because she was everything I wanted to be but couldn’t.

I was barely in my teens at the time I started watching the show, so I was still figuring out who I was and I had a lot of insecurities to boot. Watching her march to the beat of her own drummer inspired me to do the same. I didn't develop the chutzpah to truly emulate Clarissa until later in life, but you can say that Clarissa Explains it All planted the seeds of self-confidence in me.

On the show, Clarissa broke the fourth wall—turn to the camera and address the audience directly—to explain what was going on in her world. She talked about the concerns of a typical teenage girl, such as boys, school, pimples and finding one’s place in the world. I decided to name my blog Jules Explains it All because I wanted to do the same. I’ll be blogging about my world and the things that interest me, like books, celebrities, movies, music and television.

As Clarissa herself might say, "And that's the 411."

Classic Nick Promo (Early 90's) - Clarissa Explains It All video courtesy of this YouTube channel.